Earlier this year when I was in a total slump I bit the bullet and made an appointment with a counsellor. While there I received a metaphorical slap in the face. My counsellor told me that I should try adopting “an attitude of gratitude” by listing five things I am grateful for each morning.
For some reason, possibly because I was in such a deep pit of anxiety and self-pity, I instantly internally rejected what she was saying all the while I nodded my head and said things like “that sounds like a good idea. I think I’ll try it.” In my defence I did try it by keeping a gratitude jar on my desk at work, but I didn’t really commit to it. I probably put a grand total of 5 folded up post-it notes in the jar over a total of 3 months and chalked it up as something that just didn’t work for me.
Since starting a new job and emerging into a space of greater happiness I started thinking more and more about adopting an attitude of gratitude and what it actually means.
Over recent years a lot of research has been conducted into the benefits of expressing gratitude on our social, emotional and physical health. Overall, research has found that people who regularly express gratitude and more likely to experience fewer illnesses, aches and pains and are more likely to engage in activities that promote their health such as regular exercise and eating healthy foods. They are also likely to experience a greater sense of optimism and self-esteem, and develop deeper social connections. This all makes sense if you subscribe to the idea that you get what you give.
But the thing with adopting an attitude of gratitude is that it can be really hard when you first start out. So here is a list of 50 things I am grateful for today that might inspire you to make your own list.
What are you grateful for?